Practical Classics Restoration Classic Car Show 2016 261

The Barn Find Curse – What We all Think

The perils of the barn find and the struggles they cause 

Lets be honest we’ve all done it, your casually casting your eyes over the numerous car ads, and you spot those two magic words “Barn Find”. Your mind automatically goes to images of a mint condition Jaguar E-type with a little bit of dust and dirt over it, or a Dodge Charger that hasn’t been driven for 30 years, and yes these cars do exist, but they are incredibly rare and getting rarer as the years go by.

 Don’t fall into the trap 

But the car you’re looking at has a few dents (and those are only the ones pictured) and you’ll say to yourself “its only got a little bit of surface rust”, meanwhile the car is only being held together by the dirt that covers it. You’ll exaggerate your capabilities as a mechanic and think, “I’ll have it back on the road in 3 months, it won’t take that long,” completely forgetting that they don’t actually make the parts for it anymore and you haven’t picked up a spanner in ten years.

 The illusions of grandeur 

I am no stranger to the allure of the barn find, but they are inevitably filled with rust and are almost certainly past the point of saving, and deep down you know this. But it doesn’t stop the hope, that wish to one day own a classic car that you brought back from the brink of death, a car all your friends are jealous of and is as pristine and perfect as the day it rolled of the production line.

We have a problem 

This love is in all petrol heads we cant help it, and we should try to save as many as we can from the big scrapheap in the sky, but its not worth your life savings, your marriage, a relationship with your kids. When it’s done you’ll have to live in it because the bank took away your house.

 Good luck 

I’m not saying don’t do it, but be aware, do your research. Look at the car and with a clear head realise the undertaking that saving it will take. And if you’ve done all this and have the time and the money to put in, by all means take the plunge. Hopefully, you’ll come out the other side with a beautiful classic that will only appreciate in value.

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